Hey, friends and lovers! Are you excited for Valentine’s Day? Have big plans with the one you love?
Or are there a million other things you care about besides this and it’s a pretty pointless, over-commercialized Hallmark holiday? I fall somewhere in the middle.
I’m married, so it’s not like I have anything romantic going on.
LOL @ sexless marriages.
Husband and I never put too much pressure on ourselves for these kinds of things. We like to keep it casual and focus on spending time together. Not buying stuff or being uncomfortable at fancy dinner or being disengenous with candlelit sexy times. Plain old sexy times are good enough for this girl.
Seriously though, we don’t even buy each other anniversary gifts, opting instead to spend our money on a thing we do together. Last year we spent a weekend in Toronto at the Just for Laughs comedy festival. This year it’s our 5-year-anniversary, a milestone, so we’re planning a vacation – somewhere warm. It’s a toss-up between seeing the sights around Hawaii or going to Universal Studios. The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, here I come, maybe!
With that in mind, we’ve been thinking about today – do we do something? Do we save our money? Do we really even care? We decided to at least get out of the house, away from the kids and the pets, for some alone time. No gifts, just time. So, I’ve put together a list of some date night ideas (doesn’t need to be Valentine’s Day) specifically for booknerds like you and I!
This is my perfect kind of weekday date, because it screams “I have work in the morning!” but also provides a romantic, niche atmosphere. It’s not your typical dinner-and-drinks, or drinks-and-a-movie. Wander the stacks, take it in the smell, find hidden treasures, laugh at the ridiculous vintage books you can find, and support a local business at the same time. Nothing sexier than that!
I haven’t tried this one yet, but I’m going to as long as my husband can stay awake long enough. (He’s turning into his father, I swear.) My idea would be to each pick your favourite based-on-a-book movie, make some popcorn and snuggle up!
I know it doesn’t sound super romantic, but there are a couple of ways to do this. Do you have a University or College close by? Their libraries are always interesting, and if you can’t afford to spend a bundle of books at a traditional store, these suckers are free! The one University library in my city is huge – three or four floors, with endless options to browse. You can also hit up your local library – pick out books for each other, and discuss over drinks why you want your date to read it, or why you thought they’d like it.
I haven’t been able to find one that both my husband and I would be interested in just yet, but I’m forever on the lookout at bookstores, libraries and Universities. It’s something I’ve never done before and I’m interested in trying. Plus, I’ve heard that novel experiences (no pun intended) can lead to heightened feelings of intimacy – a reason horror movies, and having the shit scared out of you, is always a winning date night.
If you can’t find a reading to attend, bring the reading to you! Candles. Hors d’oeuvres. A cozy spot. Wine. And a book you’re both interested in reading. Take turns reading to each other. My husband and I used to do this a lot when we were first dating, especially when we were long distance. We’d be on Skype together, or on the phone, and he’d read to me. Once we started living together we kept it going on Saturday nights when we had the time. It’s actually really romantic to curl up in your partner’s arms and listen to their voice tell you a story.
Or you know, you could get regular books too. But for the purpose of this date, a cookbook in necessary. There are so many to choose from – find something that speaks to both of your tastes. Choose a recipe, pick up the ingredients and then head home to make the meal together. Speaking from experience, there is something sexy about cooking with the one love (or lust). When you’re married with kids and jobs, you find any small opportunity to inject some affection into your day. For my husband and I, that can sometimes be ass-slapping and boob-grabbing while we make dinner together.
I mean what says “bookish romance” more than Nicholas Sparks? I don’t read romance novels, but even I know the man has been writing romance for 20 years and turning those books into tear-jerker movies that have caused my dark heart to break. Not an easy task. So, why not take some moves from his novels. From The Notebook, Noah and Allie go out in a canoe. In real life, head to the nearest lake and rent a kayak or rowboat, or even a paddle boat! Paul and Adrienne, from Nights in Rodanthe, basically indulge in a free vacation at a bed and breakfast in the middle of a storm. In real life, shell out the dollars for a night at a bed and breakfast. Don’t have the extra cash? Staycation! Take a bath together and eat breakfast in bed for dinner.
Hubs and I will be spending our night at the bookstore and then heading over to a bakery for dessert and coffee. It’s nothing fancy, but it’ll make us both happy to spend some quiet, dedicated time together. Plus, books!
Even if you don’t have a Valentine, who cares? Make today a Galentine’s Day. Bring your friend and hit up the bookstore together. Or go by yourself! I love doing things alone. Self-love is important too! Grab yourself a cupcake or a glass of wine and enjoy a night in with your favourite book.
Happy Valentine’s Day, Booknerds…